It wouldn't be summer without fireworks. Take a break from your hometown show to check out one of these extraordinary displays -- all worth the trip.
During this awe-inspiring show on July 3, fireworks erupt over the arresting Mount Rushmore National Memorial. Fireworks launch at 9:15 p.m., but the entertainment -- folk singers, flag ceremonies, military flyovers, and more -- begins at noon in the park's outdoor amphitheater. The event is free; however the park requires a $10-per-car parking fee, valid for the entire year.
Photo Credit: South Dakota Tourism
For more information, visit www.TravelSD.com.
Philly's nine-day extravaganza features two back-to-back fireworks displays. The first show kicks off on the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (made famous by Rocky) on Friday, July 4 at 8:30 p.m. and features a free concert by Grammy-favorite John Legend. The city continues the festivities on Saturday, July 5 at 6:30 p.m. with another complimentary fireworks display at Penn's Landing on the Delaware River. The event showcases a live performance from hometown stars Boyz II Men.
Photo Credit: Photo by R. Kennedy for GPTMC
For more information, visit www.AmericasBirthday.com.
St. Louis' famous Gateway Arch is the centerpiece of this city's July 4 fireworks display -- and you can see an encore of it every Friday and Saturday night through Aug. 2. The fireworks shows, part of the LIVE on the Levee concert series, start at around 9:15 on the riverfront. The display can be seen for miles, but you can't beat the grounds surrounding the arch. Don't miss the Independence Day event featuring soul songstress Joss Stone at 8 p.m.
Photo Credit: CelebrateSt.Louis.org
For more information, visit www.CelebrateStLouis.org.
Bean Town will pull out all the stops this year with 20,000 pounds of fireworks. The extravaganza takes place over the scenic Charles River. The free 4th of July concert begins at 8 p.m. and is followed by a 30-minute fireworks show at 10:30 p.m.
Photo Credit: Boston 4 Celebrations
For more information, visit July4th.org.
Don't miss the 50th anniversary of Detroit's riverfront fireworks. The show will light up the international skyline on Monday, June 23 at 10:06 p.m. Known as one of the largest shows in the North America, the display features more than 10,000 pyrotechnic effects and can be seen for miles on both sides of the Detroit International Riverfront.
Photo Credit: The Parade Company
For more information, visit TheParade.org/Freedomfest/.
Here, you can choose from two theatrical fireworks displays almost every night of the week throughout the year. Epcot's nightly finale, "IllumiNations: Reflections of the Earth" (shown here), explodes above the resort's World Showcase Lagoon. The show's highlight, a 28-foot diameter spinning sphere called Earth Globe, transforms into a three-story video screen below the fireworks. At the Magic Kingdom, Jiminy Cricket narrates the Disney adventure "Wishes." The pyrotechnic display bursts forth almost every night above Cinderella's castle and can be viewed from various locations throughout the theme park.
Photo Credit: The Walt Disney Company
For more information, visit DisneyWorld.com.
Don't miss this year's "Americafest" at the Rose Bowl, when the famous stadium hosts its 82nd annual July 4 celebration. In addition to a 30-minute world-class fireworks show, the event spotlights field performances from five of the country's top drum and bugle corps. Bring your family early for tailgating, crafts, and inflatable rides beginning at noon outside the stadium. General admission tickets are $25 each, but members of the military and their families as well as children 7 and under can enter for free.
Photo Credit: The Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau
For tickets, visit TicketMaster.com
Kick back on the beach for an oceanfront fireworks display on North Myrtle Beach. You can hear synchronized music throughout the show by tuning into the local FM station 94.9, The Surf. The complimentary show begins at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, July 4 along the quarter-mile-long Cherry Grove Fishing Pier.
Photo Credit: North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce
For more information visit NMBEvents.com.
You can see this fireworks display from most neighborhoods in the District -- but the most spectacular views are on the National Mall. You can lie back on the nearly 2-mile long expansive of grass that surrounds the monuments and watch as the colorful fireworks display illuminate the Washington Monument. The all-day event kicks off with a parade on Constitution Avenue, and features concerts, crafts, and local food; fireworks start around 9:20 p.m., but the Mall fills up fast, so it's best to snag a spot early.
Photo Credit: Jake McGuire
For more information, visit Washington.org.
Bring a picnic to Auditorium Shores to enjoy fireworks set to music performed by the Austin Symphony Orchestra. The symphony concert kicks off at 8:30 p.m., with fireworks starting at 9:30 p.m.
Photo Credit: Victor Ovalle, Austin Parks and Recreation
For more information, visit